The bell rang, and all the students rushed to their classrooms, including Ravi. It was Ravi’s first day of school, and he had never been to school before in his life. Ravi was 15 years old and was born to a woodcutter named Anand. Both Ravi and Anand lived on a hill. In his early years, Ravi helped his father cut wood from the hilltops sold in the city to support their family and keep them warm in their hut.
Due to extreme poverty, Anand couldn’t afford to send his son to school, though he had always dreamt of it. Ravi had spent his life helping his father and learning the woodcutter’s trade. He knew how to sharpen an axe and strike the tree in the right spots. Ravi had never had friends and had never been to the city. He had only cut trees and carried wood.
One day, Anand told Ravi about his plans to send him to school. Ravi asked, “What is school?” Anand pointed to the red building down the hill and explained that he would receive an education at the school. With education, he could become intelligent and find better work.
Not quite sure if he understood, Ravi nodded in agreement. He had no idea if there was anything better than cutting and carrying wood, as he had never seen anything else while living on the hilltop.
So, one day, Ravi was in a classroom with all the other new kids. The teacher entered, and everyone was greeted with respect. The teacher announced that each student had to share their life ambition. Ravi had never heard the word “ambition” before. When his turn came, he asked the teacher to explain it. The teacher described ambition as something one wants to achieve or become.
Ravi was perplexed. He couldn’t understand why he was being told to imagine a goal or destination. He felt content cutting wood and living his life simply. He questioned whether everyone needed to have ambitions and walk a path to reach them.
The teacher urged Ravi to think about his ambition, but Ravi replied that his ambition was to cut wood in the morning, have tea in the evening, and sleep at night, which was already his daily life. The teacher dismissed the class, and Ravi remained confused.
That night, Ravi shared his experience with his father, Anand, who appreciated Ravi’s perspective and suggested that he tell them what they wanted to hear because even the teachers had ambitions.
The next day at school, Ravi told the teacher that he wanted to be a doctor. The teacher applauded, and Ravi took his seat. He looked outside and observed the rain, realizing that nature had no plan; it simply existed.
Ravi pondered whether there was a set path or a definite goal to reach. He contemplated the idea of living in harmony with nature and questioned the need to alter it. He realized that life is continuously evolving, and it’s okay to have ambitions but also okay to be happy with where you are in the present.
Ravi’s journey of self-discovery at school taught him that life doesn’t always require a defined path or a specific goal. It’s about finding contentment and happiness in the present acknowledging that life is constantly evolving.